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Natural Air Fresheners

No matter what the season, often times, the air in the house needs a little freshening — whether it’s from cooking odors, litter boxes, a dirty clothes hamper, or closed off rooms. Why not try these natural air fresheners?

Though they provide a quick fix, store-bought air fresheners and deodorizers usually contain toxic chemicals and irritants such as cyclodextrin, sodium polyacrylate, and benzisothiazolinone that may be particularly harsh and harmful to babies, those who are pregnant, and others with sensitive respiratory systems. With cancer rates on the rise and an eye to environmental factors, there are natural options to sweeten and freshen the air in your home. These involve essential oils (oils from herbs, flowers or leaves that have been separated from the plant), whole herbs, spices, orange and lemon rinds–each bringing the scent of spring to the stuffiest days of winter.

Try these gentle, chemical-free homemade recipes for a fresh-smelling house that helps you breathe easier:

Try These Natural Air Fresheners

Fruit Oil Room Spray
Add 12-15 drops of essential oil like grapefruit, orange or lemon–or 20 drops for a stronger result–to ½ cup white vinegar and 1½ cups water. (If using more essential oil, use a little more vinegar and water.) Try peppermint or lavender oil too. Pour into a spray bottle.

Baking Soda and Essential Oil Air Freshener
In a small jar, add 8-12 drops essential oil of your choice to 1/2 cup baking soda. Cover and shake. Remove cover and place a small screen over the top or punch holes in cover and close. Set on counter or table.

Ground Cinnamon, Cloves, and Fruit Rinds Kitchen Deodorizer
Place a few teaspoons of cinnamon and cloves into boiling water. Add orange and/or lemon rinds or zest. Allow to gently simmer for a while but be sure to keep an eye on the pot to ensure water doesn’t evaporate.

Eucalyptus Oil Freshener
Fill a spray bottle with water and a few drops of eucalyptus oil. In addition to freshening the air, eucalyptus oil is thought to kill bacteria on countertops, doorknobs, etc.

Coffee Grounds and Baking Soda
Fill separate bowls with coffee grounds and baking soda. Set out overnight or for a couple of days. Reportedly works wonders at absorbing odors in the air.

Peppermint – or Vanilla-Scented Cotton Balls
Sprinkle peppermint or vanilla essential oil on cotton balls. Place in a small bowl in the bathroom, such as behind the toilet.

Vodka and Essential Oil Air Freshener
Because ethyl alcohol is a primary ingredient in vodka as well as commercial air fresheners, adding 20 or 30 drops of fragrant essential oil to a cup of vodka in a spray bottle will work well–without the added chemicals.

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  • Robyn says:

    Used or fresh coffee grounds?

    • Shannon says:

      Must be fresh dry grounds. We use them even in the ER at times when immediate need of something needed to filter the air/mask odors. We aren’t allowed to put them in direct patient care areas/rooms but they have been placed at various inconspicuous places around nurses stations and in the hall and works great.

  • Karen Nowak says:

    I bought two large salt lamps a couple of weeks ago, after reading about all the health benefits these things are supposed to have. I honestly don’t feel any better, or breathe better, or feel they are in any way mood altering, but I am amazed that I am not getting the static shocks I always get this time of year! They also seem to keep the air fresher with the windows closed constantly and the wood stove burning all the time. It’s 8 degrees out right now, so opening windows isn’t an option.

  • Wanetta says:

    I cut the trimmings from cleaning my celery, put them in a pan of water and let them simmer. I do not throw my orange peel away right away, but, dice it up fine or mince it and sit around in little Dinah.

  • Jenn says:

    I mix vodka, water and EO together in a bud vase with some bamboo skewers. The oil mixture wicks up the skewers giving off an amazing scent.

  • Michael Long says:

    I just open the windows for few hours and let the fresh air in!

  • Jenny says:

    For essential oils, you can get them from my website as well, http://www.mydoterra.com/jam76/#/. I use them all the time for a numerous amount of things.

  • I buy my essential oils @ Rollin'Oats says:

    Love your ideas …on room fresheners with essential oils…

  • Kaye Graham says:

    Where do i get essential oils or how do i make the oils?
    Definitely wanna try all these natural aromas around the house.
    Thanks for sharing…

  • Sheba Harris says:

    From me

  • Corky Hamp says:

    heat an old frying pan for 90 seconds on high…walk through your home sprinkling cinnamon in the pan. The smoke from the cinnamon leaves a great fragrance throughout the house.

  • Judy Bishop says:

    Another idea to freshen the kitchen is take 2 oranges, peel them and put the peels in the garbage disposal and grind them up, the smell is amazing!

  • Katherine Smith says:

    Another suggestion for an AMAZING room fragrance is putting about 6 – 10 drops of Ylang-Ylang Oil in water into a potpourri burner (either electric or votive heated). The scent is just intoxicating! Don’t be fooled, however, by the initial scent of Ylang-Ylang from the bottle itself because it is deceptively powdery and heavy. But once the fragrance is released into the air, it is like a fresh, exotic garden in that room. Another suggestion is taking the combo of essential oil and baking powder, sprinkling it on the carpet just before bed, and vaccumming the next morning.

  • Lil Al says:

    Gail: what spice do you use with the cinnamon? I use cloves, cinnamon and orange peels but open for other ideas. Thanks.

    Cat the Great: did you learn how to make essential oils? I would be interested also. Thanks.

  • Vicki M. says:

    I have added the oils to the baking soda and then placed in clean, dry spice bottles with the shaker on the bottle to let the aroma come through. I tied a ribbon around the bottle that coordinated with my room colors and just set it on an end table. The odor filled the room without being overpowering. If you feel that the aroma is a bit much for your room you can put a piece of clear tape over some of the holes reducing the number to something that is more pleasing to your environment.

  • Terri says:

    I use and sell essentail oils. They make a difference with everything from uplifting moods to freshening rooms.

  • cat the great says:

    how do you make essential oils

  • Gail McCanless says:

    These are great ideas. I’ve actually boiled all spice and cinnamon together for years. I will try immediately the baking soda and coffee grounds. Thanks for the info.

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